NY Times Photographer Grasps What NY Times Text Denies

By David North on June 28, 2013

Shown below is an older, unemployed American engineer (white hair, no jacket, apparently kneeling, perhaps pleading, on the outside of the circle) and a younger Asian, presumably a high-tech executive (dark hair, jacket, sitting at the table, presumably listening) at a Silicon Valley gathering. The photo, from today's New York Times, was taken by Noah Berger, and was used to illustrate an article headlined (in the paper version) "The Idled of Silicon Valley: A Bill Allowing More Foreign Workers Stirs a Tech Debate". It is on the first page of today's business section, page B1.


The Times caption was "At a networking meeting in Saratoga, Calif., Joey Doernberg, an unemployed engineer, said his skills were not ideal now."

The article, like the caption, largely reflected the industry's argument that there is a "skills shortage" and a "need" for more foreign workers. The article quotes Doernberg "that at 53, he looks older than he is;" and goes on to say: "youth is at a premium in his industry."

The H-1B program, to be hugely expanded should the Senate-passed S.744 become law, in effect tolerates and facilitates employers' decisions to hire younger alien workers (virtually all males and mostly Asians) over experienced American workers.

Happily, and to their credit, neither the photographer nor the photo editor at the Times seems to have heard about their newspaper's editorial tilt. Perhaps the caption should have been "Do You See What I See?"